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2011 Raiders Draft Picks: Joseph Barksdale Could Be A Sleeper On The Offensive Line

The Oakland Raiders selected LSU offensive tackle Joseph Barksdale with their third round pick (92nd overall) in the 2011 NFL Draft. Barksdale can play both sides of the line and would likely get his first shot at a starting spot on the right side. The folks at Silver & Black Pride took some time to break down what Barksdale can bring to the table and think he could end up being a sleeper in the draft.

Some of the scouting reports linked seemed to view Barksdale as a guy who deserved a lot more publicity than he otherwise received:

In the fight for the top offensive tackle in the 2011 NFL Draft, it is astonishing that Joseph Barksdale's name does not come up more often. Barksdale is a better athlete than he is given credit for at the left tackle position. In addition his technique is the best I have seen out of any tackle in this draft class.

The folks at Walter Football felt similarly and viewed him with as much upside as any of the tackles selected in the 2011 NFL Draft:

I don't understand why Barksdale isn't more well regarded as a 2011 NFL Draft prospect nationally, but I really don't care. I have watched a lot of tape on the most lauded 2010 NFL Draft tackle prospects, and Barksdale's games are easily the best. He has a very high upside and has the raw talent to be an elite left tackle in the NFL with the prototype technique to boot.

Walter Football did mention that he missed a block or two per game, so it's certainly something people will be keeping an eye on at the next level. If Barksdale is a guy who will take plays off from time to time, he might find himself struggling in adjusting to the NFL level of play. If he shows discipline and plays whistle-to-whistle he could turn into a serious steal in the third round.